25 October 2012

Setting blocks - To the Point

Blocks on point.

Works with blocks up to 7" square
Uses the Hunter's Star 12" collection, AND the Hunter's Star 9" collection (for the triangle)

Cheat-sheet for the setting for one 6" block (finished size)

 Log-cabin the block (if necessary, see picture in yesterday's post.

Trim down to (unfinished size) 8,25" square

For the following : DO NOT sew into the seam-allowance at the corners. Stop at the cross-hair.

Add a trapezoid shape to one of the (shorter) edges of the triangle, so that the angled side of the trapezoid flushes with the angled side of the triangle

Add another trapezoid-shape to the other (shorter) edge of the triangle.
Again : The angled side of the trapezoid should flush with the angled side of the triangle, once it is pieced and pressed.

Join the angled edges at the 'top' of the triangle.

Make 4 identical pieced triangles

Add the corners to the log-cabined block.


And Finished.

24 October 2012

Setting blocks - the Straight and Narrow

Blocks on straight.
Works with blocks up to 8" square
Uses the Hunter's Star 12" collection, AND the Leaf Sashing 4.5" collection (for the triangle)

Cheat-sheet for the setting of one 6" block (finished size).

The beauty is, that this setting will work for blocks up to 8.25" square. The necessary adjustment is made on the plain strips that border the block-proper, and the important part is, that once it has been bordered, and trimmed, but before adding the units containing the trapezoids and the triangles, it needs to have a finished size of 8.84" square ( = 9.34" unfinished).

What is more. If you have a set of blocks, that should be 'same size' but aren't, you can hide quite substantial differences in size with this setting, because the setting in and of itself will make a secondary pattern to draw interest away from the different sizes.
As always, photographing inklingo-printed fabric is not easy. However, if you have trouble seeing what I'm writing about, try clicking on the picture to enlarge it.

Log-cabin the block with strips of the same fabric you're using for the triangles.

Trim down to 9.375 (UNfinished size)

For the following : DO NOT sew into the seam-allowance at the corners. Stop at the cross-hair.

Sew a trapezoid to one side of each triangle.
Press away from triangle.

 Make 4 identical strips

Add a pieced strip to each side of the log-cabined block

Piece the corners.

Now, the corners are made with inset seams, but since you have not sewn into the seam-allowances at the corners, but have stopped at the cross-hairs, this should not be a problem !
If you baulk at the thought of doing inset seams, try checking Linda Franz's All About Inklingo Blog.
This is where you (among many other treasures) can find the video on how to stitch hexagons on your sewing-machine.
Use the same principles, and you should be good.


And you're finished !

P.S. The block shown in this post is actually 6.25" finished size, and not 6". The only difference between this one, and a 6" block is, that you will trim off a bit more of the fabric you use to log-cabin the block proper.
That is all.

23 October 2012

Setting blocks

Remember the Inklingo Sampler blog?
It started out with lots of 5 and 6" blocks, with a few blocks that were larger than 6". Now, with the arrival of the brand new Inklingo 12" Hunter's Star collection, and the trapezoid shape found there, you can set a number of differenet block-sizes, both on point and on straight, and still have a uniform expression to the quilt.

... it also has the added bonus, that even a quite small number of smallish blocks, can become a big quilt with a fairly small effort.

I'll try to show you some options over the next two posts. And yes, I'm splitting it up into multiple posts, because if I didn't, this would be one, monster-post.

To whet your interest, here is a picture of some blocks using the settings I'll try to make a write-up for in the next couple of days.

P.S. And if you want to make sure you don't miss the write-ups, you can follow this blog, either by 'following' or subscribing by e-mail, links to both in the right-hand column.

18 October 2012

Making out with BOB - the end

I don't think I ever showed this one off. But I assure you, it was finished during lent of 2012.
Making out with BOB (Bag of Blocks), made of sundry 'loose blocks' and fabric from stash, supplemented with newly printed Inklingo-shapes to make it all fit together.
There are 6" blocks, 4.5" blocks, old and new, hexagon flowers, triangles, and fabrics old and new.

... and I love it. Frankly, I do. It is simply quilted. Straight lines. On the machine. By me.
And it has become a favourite cuddle-up-on-the-couch quilt for everyone, because it is neither too big to be cumbersome or too small to be useless.

P.S. I used the pink-and-blue bunny-toile for the back. It is over the top and absolutely wonderful.

02 August 2012

Can we talk about colours ?

I have not been a good blogger for a very long time, and I doubt I will be a good blogger again in the next couple of months either. Too much work, and many family commitments, and no sewing worth mentioning.
I have, however, been knitting. And as can be seen from some of my more recent posts, I've delved into the wonderful world of indie-dyers.
And that is, what I want to talk about.
Because, with independent dyers, you get small dye-lots, and you get variations of colour. Lots of variations. Also, most indie-dyers are not professional photographers, and cannot afford to hire in someone who is.
This leads to some problems, though, and I'm writing this post to try and deal with the elephant in the room that is shop-pictures.
When buying off the internet, you base your choices on the pictures found on the shop-page of who-ever you're trading with. If those pictures are not a fairly accurate representation of the colour you (think) you're buying, you're up the creek.

You might remember this post, how the picture on the dyer's shop-page was a very light, mostly blue and pink yarn, and how I got a very dark, mostly purple and green yarn.
Well, that particular dyer is not alone.
Here is a more recent, and equally glaring example :
Shop picture
My picture of what I got.

The Shop-picture (top, I think) is lifted from the producer's shop-page. Looks very yellow and red to me, with accents of green and blue. Bright, summery colours.

The other picture (bottom, I think), though, is of the skein I actually got. Looks very rust and green to me, with hints of some pinks and some golds (and the picture on my screen is a fair representation when compared to the real thing)

Now, I would dearly love to own more of the yarn I actually got. I love that far more and far better, than the picture on the shop-page (and it knits up beautifully), but ... and this is where it gets tricky.
Let's say I order N skeins of the colour, because I love what I got, but when I get the skeins, they look exactly like the shop-picture. They might look just like the yarn I got before, but since the picture on the shop-page is patently untrustworthy, I have no way of knowing.

Bottom-line is, that I dare not order more of this yarn.
This means, that the producer (an indie-dyer) doesn't get my business (and we're talking shopping in excess of 100 $ here), and I get wary about buying from them again, because, obviously, their pictures are not to be trusted, and when they are not to be trusted, I cannot make the right sort-of decisions, and might 'waste' a lot of $$$ on something I don't want after all.

And yes, I know that the dye-process, particularly when using multiple different colours, can be tricky, but, really? That tricky? I have always thought, that one of the most important factors in dyeing is the water, and the setting-agents, and that changing either of these can play havoc with what you thought you knew about your colours, but, as far as I know, we're talking same dye-studio, and same water-supply, and - presumably - same setting-agents. And to be quite frank : To my eyes, the yarn in the two pictures carries next to no resemblance to each other, and I frankly cannot believe, that we're talking normal variations.

And no, it isn't a stand-alone thing. I've seen similar discrepancies, with practically all the indie-dyers I have bought from, and this leads me to believe, that the common source of error is to be found in the pictures. Now :
 I know, that indie-dyers are (usually) not professional photographers.
I know, that indie-dyers cannot (usually) afford to hire professionals.
I do, however, firmly believe, that indie-dyers can (learn to) calibrate both their own screens and their cameras, can learn to compare the picture on the screen to the yarn in hand, and thus reduce, if not completely do away with, that particular error.
I also firmly believe, that indie-dyers should check each dye-lot up against the picture they have on their shop-page, and if there is a visible difference, upload a new picture, so that their customers know what they're getting into.
Finally, I believe that calibrating screen and camera, and uploading new pictures as often as is appropriate, is a sound business practice for said indie-dyers. Customers will know that the dyer's shop-pictures are trust-worthy, and will not be (as) wary about spending their $$$ there, because they know they'll get what they saw on the screen (and that any variations are minor).

And in case you wondered : Because I buy a lot on the internet (both yarn and fabric), my computer-screen is calibrated as accurately as I can do it, and I spend a lot of time, when I get new fabrics (or yarns), so I am constantly fine-tuning the colour-calibration. Also, my screen is less than 3 years old (and is a mac), so ... I doubt that I'm the problem here.

Can I ask ye indie-dyers who read this, to please, pretty please :
Calibrate your screens!
Take pictures of your yarn in natural light, but not in direct sunshine.
Spend an afternoon fooling around with your camera, so that you know the pictures you take with it are, colour-wise, as accurate as they can be.
Before uploading a new picture of a new dye-lot to your web-shop, check that the picture you plan to use is a fair representation of the product you're selling.

I am confident that you will get more return-customers that way, and that the 'one-time-buyers' will be reduced. Perhaps not mightily, but somewhat.

Thank you.

And just so you know, it isn't just one case, here is another one. More like each other, but still, not nearly as clearly latte-/light-brown and yellow as the shop-picture leads one to believe :
My picture, natural light


16 March 2012

A(nother) small break from BOB

Straight-line quilting might be simple, but it still takes time (and is booooring to do !), so, to allievate the boredom, here is a picture of some drop-dead gorgeous yarn I bought :

I present to you, from left to right : Tiny Bloodsucking Dancer; Oooh ... shiny!; and Kathleen Turner Overdrive.
Yes. Those are really the names of the colourways (and she has names that are FAR more interesting than these). Indigodragonfly hand-dyed yarn, 80% Merino, 20% Cashmere, fingering weight ... yum.

12 March 2012

Making out with BOB - week 3.3

SO, after a few days with no stitching (paid work does interfere with the rest of one's life), I'm back to BOB, and to trying to make something.
And now, the ambition has become, that this one needs to become a finished, actually FINISHED quilt during Lent (and thus, before Easter), so the first stop is : The backing.
I am dithering between two fabrics. Both from stash. One is the 'Princess Diana' fabric, which I - for reasons that are at the present completely unclear to me - rushed out and bought back when the lady died.
The other is a sale-fabric from 1-2 years back.

So now I'm walking around myself, looking at both, draping the 'main blue' of the front across them, and trying to make a decision.
Any input?

08 March 2012

Making out with BOB - week 3.2

And I give you : A finished top.
I decided to go with the blue borders, and it looks ... good! Makes the blocks and the pink inner border pop better. At least I think so :-)

Took me just two weeks to get here too!
I can't remember when last I worked this fast.
Of course, all the blocks were there already, and that speeds up the process immensely. Now comes the big question : Can I keep it up until I have an actual finished quilt?
Well, I intend to give it my best. Just not these coming 24 odd hours, because there are things like paid-work which needs doing :-)

 BUT, stay tuned all the same. You never know :-)

07 March 2012

Making out with BOB - week 3

 Hard decisions to make : 

Do I add blue corners to make the corners 90 degrees, or don't I?

Do I add a blue border all the way around or don't I?

It will definitely, eventually, be bound by the blue batik, but:

Will there be a border?
If 'yes', how wide?

I find myself at the point where I worry a bit, whether adding to it will detract from it. As a carpenter freind once taught me 'if it gets any better, it'll go to pot'. The trick is to know when you hit that particular point.

So far I am surprised - in the best possible way - by how well it is turning out.

06 March 2012

05 March 2012

Making out with BOB - week 2.6

So, here they are, two rows of hexagon-flowers stitched together. The two strips are not joined to each other, just a mock-up, and ... looking good.

If they don't work with the quilt, I will have a lovely table-runner for spring.

04 March 2012

Making out with BOB - week 2.5

 Not much visual difference to the main body compared to previous posts, but the edge has been trimmed, and there is a pink strip added all around.

03 March 2012

Making out with BOB - week 2.4

SO, triangles are printed (using the Inklingo 3" Diamond collection), and here's the mock-up.
I think this will work.
Next step : Get the top and bottom strips joined into strips instead of just being a mock-up on a design wall.

02 March 2012

Making out with BOB - week 2.3

Don't get too used to see me posting every day, it's just ... I seem to be on a roll with this one, and have - so far - had time to actually work on it, AND take pictures, AND write on this blog.
The really shocking thing about this is, that if you work on a project, it will progress !

The 'Tilde has time to quilt'-thing can change at the drop of a hat, but until that happens, I'll post my daily progress, or, if I think that is too little to merit interest, post 'something else'.

... now ... where was I ... yes ... something to make it longer.

A search through BOB brought forth 16 Hexagon flowers, each with 3" finished sides ... they are remnants of a project I don't remember even thinking of doing, but made with Inklingo (so they are no more than 5 years old). I can see that I used the now sold-out CD-1, but the 1" Hexagons and 1" Diamonds are available as downloads.
They look sort-of nice as they are placed above and below the body of the quilt, so I think I'll print some 3" Inklingo 60-degree triangles, in both the pink and the blue setting-fabric and use 14 of the 16 to make top and bottom borders of this one.

If all goes to pot, or the two elements don't work well together, I can always make a table-runner from the flowers.

01 March 2012

Making out with BOB - week 2.2

All together now.
... and I could just end it here.
As is, it is 42.5 x 51". Not a huge quilt by any standards, but ... I think it could do with becoming just a tad taller ... ideally somewhere between 60 and 65" tall ... that would give a fair balance with the 'just over 40" wide' ... I think.
I'll go dig into BOB and see if anything (else) suitable hides in there. If there isn't anything bright and batik-y, I'll end the party here.

29 February 2012

Making out with BOB - week 2

AND log-cabining is done, and one half of the blocks has been stitched together.

... this is going to be a cutie of a quilt, even if I say so myself :-) Who would have thunk that BOB hid such cuteness. Not me, that's for certain :-) but it seems it did.
Onward and forward!

28 February 2012

More Knitting while waiting

Still at it with log-cabining and joining of pieces.
SO, here's another finish from my 2012 list of finishes.
Pattern is Rivendell Smoke Ring, from Sunflower Designs.
Yarn is Silkie Socks that Rock, in the colourway 'Stormy Weather'
Stripey effect is completely happenstance!
There is a gorgeous lace-pattern in there, but, unfortunately, it disappears completely in the stripes. Oh, well, it is warm and lovely to wear, and that was important.
I'll try knitting it up in a different yarn, one where the lace-pattern is actually visible.

27 February 2012

Waiting for the log-cabining ...

While I get the rest of the blocks log-cabined, and start getting them together, here's a picture of a finish I haven't shown before.
The Hana-shawl.

Now, I do love the design of the floral border.
I don't mind short-rows at all either.
But I don't get the 'fad' for shawls that are almost scarves. Very slim, half-moon shaped ones.
Oh, well. If I knit this one again, I'll be experimenting on how to make it so that the centre of the shawl becomes long enough to actually cover my back.

I used Manos del Uruguay Silk Blend for it, and ... yes ... it is a lovely yarn, but ...
I always compare prize to quality, and there has to be some correspondence between the two, and on this one, in my opinion, the prize is simply too high when compare with what one gets.
I get it that it is artisan-work and kettle-dyed.
I get that the dyeing is not completely even.
I still do not care for a yarn that has decidedly white spots when knitted.
SO, all in all, yarn, pattern and prize:
I like it, but I love it not.

26 February 2012

Making out with BOB - week 1.5

The first eight 4.5" (and 5") blocks have been log-cabined, setting squares AND setting triangles have been printed and cut, and the mock-up is on the design-wall.
 And the Yep's have it.

Oh, and I've been asked if the cross that is formed by the larger blocks was by design (seeing that this is my personal challenge for lent), and the answer is, that it is happenstance (or serendipity). There were 10 blocks that were 6" square, and this was the way they looked the best (to my eyes).

25 February 2012

Making out with BOB - week 1.4

And then I remembered the mostly pink batik with butterflies. Whatever block colours that are not found in the mottled blue, are, most definitely in the pink.
And I remembered that Linda Franz has two collections out with HST (Half Square Triangles) and QST (Quarter Square Triangles) the size that works with 4.5" and 6" blocks set on point.
I'll use the 6" On-Point Triangles for this one.
This too will work.

24 February 2012

Making out with BOB - week 1.3

I think this blue batik (which was bought to go with Sunflowers, but seemed too washed out when it arrived and said Sunflowers were laid upon it for scrutiny), will play nicely with all the blocks.

Most of the block-colours are in there anyway :-)
But since these blocks are in all sizes I'll start by log-cabin'ing them.
Log-cabin / border strips, cut at 1.25" wide should work.
... or I could just print them with Inklingo. I've got the 0.75" wide Log Cabin collection that will make the 4.5" blocks into 6" ones.
Yep. Inklingo 0.75" LogCabin collection will do the trick.
... I'll cut the squares, all on my own.

23 February 2012

Making out with BOB - week 1.2

10 Dear Jane and Dear Hannah blocks, all 6" finished size.
2 Jeanna Kimball applique blocks, both 5" size
A single Heart and Hand applique-block, 4.5" size
17 Dear Jane and Dear Hannah blocks, all 4.5" size
... now, if I can find the right fabric with which to set them, this could become an ... interesting quilt ... I think ... hope ... um ... well ... I'll go looking through my stash.

22 February 2012

Making out with BOB - week 1

Lent starts today, and lasts until Easter (April 4th)
Well, it does in my corner of Christianity.
And traditionally, one 'gives up something' for lent. The eating of certain food-stuffs. A minor (or major) indulgence one usually allows oneself.

So, what about a quilty lent? I used to be a proponent of not buying any new quilty stuff during lent, but really, the economy can do with our business, so I won't suggest that. But seeing that lent is also about being frugal, about meditating on what has and has not been done, about facing one's failings and shortcomings and trying to do something positive about it, that is what I plan to do.

In a corner of my sewing-room, I have a bag, which is bursting at the seams. Really. Bursting!

It is full of odd blocks. All different sizes, fabrics, styles.
And for a short, mad, moment, I considered making a list of all of them, and publish the list here.
I gave that one up. When I hit 30 different styles/types of blocks, I stopped counting.

BUT, here's a small selection:
Quite a few of them are Dear Jane and Dear Hannah (and similar) blocks. Christmas-swap blocks (25). Signature-swap blocks (123). Various "I'll try making this a different way" blocks (42). 6" mostly-Jane blocks made with batiks (10)

There are Quilted Diamonds (28) that never made it into "The Advantages of Natural Folly" or, indeed, into the "Two inches wide" quilt-let.

There are Nearly Insane blocks (5), which were made to test if I could do them on a sewing-machine (I can, but I don't like to) ... there is just about any and every style, size and colouration block you can think of.

SO: My challenge to me, this lent, is to make something of as many blocks as possible that are currently languishing in BOB. Finish something from it !
And I'll be using my sewing-machine to do it.
I will.
Really !
Wish me luck.

20 February 2012

Out of Commission

I'm down with a cold ... or the 'flu ... or whatever.

Which is why I have been silent this past week.
I did, however, finish a knitted coffee-cozy yesterday. Mindless knitting, from the head, with yarn in colours I no longer love.
BUT, it is a finish, and it is useful (and DH likes the colours, it turns out), AND I had something to do with my hands while feeling sorry for myself.

Edited on February 23:
No, I am not an evil knitting genius :-) and yes, it was mindless knitting.
I have been doing two- (or more) - colour knitting for 40+ years; knitted my first many-colour project the summer I was 13 and recuperated from mono, and at age 15 I knitted a long skirt, using cotton-yarn, and about a zillion 'happy colours' of the very bright variety, using as many as 4 different ones on a row. So, really, knitting with two colours is pretty mindless to me.
The thing is knitted from the top, and as you can see, the patterning becomes increasingly exiting (or at least less weird) as it progresses :-)

11 February 2012

Hexagon Alphabet

I have finally moved on the Hexagon letters that I published on the Inklingo Sampler blog in 2011
(see here). There will - in the fullness of time - be better directions for putting it together than is now up at the Sampler-blog, but ... here are the pictures to tide you over :-)
The front, all pieced together and with the border attached.
Backing, pieced from left overs, miscuts and other scraps of the two fabrics used in the top.
Marked up! and with the thread ready to roll.
Gratuitous kitty-picture

08 February 2012

In time for Valentine's Day

 I really wanted to show you pictures of the finished Passacaglia (yes, it is finished !) but the weather is behaving dreadfully, and the helper/s I need to hold up the quilt, out of doors, in daylight, leave before there's enough light outside, and do not come back until it is too dark.
The blessings of living in Ultima Thule (well ... not quite, just in Copenhagen)
SO, here are pictures of another finish. Pictures I could take without any helpers around.

I finished another shawl!

Yes, I am on a knitting roll here :-)
 Pattern is free on Ravelry, is made by Sylvie Beez, and is called 'Valentine's Hearts'.

I made a few modifications of my own, added another row of hearts, and the row of diamonds to the outside of the thing. Easy-peasy :-)

And I'll get back to you with the Passacaglia.

05 February 2012

Det er koldt derude ...

... kyndelmisse slår sin knude
Og der er isblomster på køkkenvinduet. Filigran-fine og forskellige. En af glæderne ved at bo i et gammelt hus med gode forsatsvinduer :-)

And for the English-language readers : The header and the first line of this post, are a quote from a Danish mid-winter song.

But there are frost-flowers (and ferns) on the kitchen-windows. Filigree fine and varied.
The joys of living in an old house.